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TGC's Sonic Retrospectives Adventure 2, Heroes, and '06 inbound!

#31 User is offline Laughingcow 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 11:31 AM

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View PostXRick, on 23 December 2018 - 11:19 AM, said:

You mentioned SA2 starting the series' downfall, in your opinion, but what about SA1? Wasn't it a nice transition of the Classics into 3D at the time?

Not to put words in UpC's mouth but I'm guessing it's the following:

1) Realistic human environments and the death of the Classic aesthetic.
2) "Serious" stories that eventually led to the shark jumping of the death & rebirth of Jesus "Sonic" the hedgehog.
3) The introduction of other characters in the overall plot who are more important than Sonic (Shadow, Silver, and to a lesser extent Blaze).

Sonic Adventure 1 only introduced the Monster of the week to the series. In the end, it was still mostly Sonic punching Robotnik in the face.
This post has been edited by Laughingcow: 23 December 2018 - 11:37 AM

#32 User is offline XRick 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 11:44 AM

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If that was his opinion on the matter, I do understand him, despite not thinking the same.
To me, SA1 was a revolutionary and interesting way to expand Sonic's World, despite the severe lack of anthros in comparison to humans. It felt close to the feel of the Classics, but still taking a step forward.
Due to ST never digging into Sonic's personal backstory, all other characters end up getting some spotlight one time or another. Maybe ST is to blame on that?
While there may be people who disliked 06's realistic tone and welcomed Unleashed's cartoonish tone, I almost immediately came to dislike it. 06 was going a way, character design wise, I had been wishing for since SA2, and to me, Unleashed was a tremendous step back on that front. But it's a matter of tastes, and we know the community is so fractured because of that. And the fact 06 had such development hell, leading to such a crappy experience, sure didn't help.
Seriousness in a Sonic Game's plot could do without Jesus Sonics, it simply needed to have good writing. And to me, in a sense, it needs as much seriousness as it needs comedy, a nice balance is the best.
This post has been edited by XRick: 23 December 2018 - 11:46 AM

#33 User is offline Laughingcow 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:17 PM

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View PostXRick, on 23 December 2018 - 11:44 AM, said:

To me, SA1 was a revolutionary and interesting way to expand Sonic's World, despite the severe lack of anthros in comparison to humans. It felt close to the feel of the Classics, but still taking a step forward.

And that is something pretty much everyone believes if this old thread is any evidence.
https://forums.sonic...showtopic=36727

To not beat around the bush, even if Sonic 06 wasn't a steaming pile with "good writing", it is still a vast departure from the Classics which is the same point of contention that SA2 has. My solution: Make a separate sub-series starring Shadow and place all the realistic junk there. This issue is that the realism isn't Sonic because it goes against the Classics ergo give all that to a character who by all means was made for that kind of environment.
This post has been edited by Laughingcow: 23 December 2018 - 12:18 PM

#34 User is offline XRick 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:38 PM

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Yes, SA2 & 06 were quite the departure from the Classics, in all senses. That was one of the things that started dividing the community.
But the Classics were very self-contained in their plot and setting, usually islands far removed from any signs of civilization.
SA1 bringing up humans and civilization was, to me, said revolution and expansion. And even the plot was related to S3K, from what the japanese synopsis mentioned. In that sense, SA1 ended up becoming the end of the first arc of the overall series.
SA2 began the second arc, Shadow's, which ended in Shadow the Hedgehog. To me, Heroes' attempt to being the series back to the Classics' feel felt shallow and sloppy, and ShTH didn't help a bit, ending said arc in a bad note.
Then ST had the amazing idea of trying to reboot the series with 06, but only in gameplay. They tried to make a next gen SA1&2 in one package, but it all fell through and caused the series to follow the current iteration, which I can hardly like a bit. It isn't the SA1/2 I enjoyed nor the Classics that filled my childhood, it's as shallow as Heroes and ShTH. Gameplay-wise, it's only better than those and 06 because it became Sola Sonica and Boost-to-Win.
This post has been edited by XRick: 23 December 2018 - 12:39 PM

#35 User is offline Morph 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:39 PM

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View PostLaughingcow, on 23 December 2018 - 11:31 AM, said:

1) Realistic human environments and the death of the Classic aesthetic.


Play it on the Dreamcast and it's anything but realistic. DX is the real offender here.

#36 User is offline Laughingcow 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:57 PM

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View PostMorph, on 23 December 2018 - 12:39 PM, said:

Play it on the Dreamcast and it's anything but realistic. DX is the real offender here.

I was only talking about SA2 on that comment. The humans and civilization didn't seem out of place back then because things weren't bashed over the head with a photorealistic filter. To state the obvious: Robotnik is a human ergo other humans showing up wasn't anything special. The Sonic Jam Man of the Year short for instance has humans and nobody batted an eye about it. Essentially, they were a minor detail in the grand scheme even in Sonic Adventure 1 where they are just NPCs and background elements. It wasn't until Sonic Adventure 2 which made so many realistic human elements (GUN and the President) story important that we had to start asking world building questions which inevitably got us Sonic X.

#37 User is offline Morph 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 12:59 PM

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My bad, I assumed it was a response to the question there.

#38 User is offline MainMemory 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 01:28 PM

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As someone who basically completely missed Sonic 06 when it was happening (I guess by that point I was firmly in Nintendo's camp and completely disregarded anything happening outside of that sphere), it was really interesting to hear about what it was like to be there, and it really made me think about the effect it had on the franchise for the first time. Not gonna lie, I got a bit sad by the end of it.

On the plus side, Sonic and the Secret Rings is a great game, and I will not hear anyone say otherwise.

#39 User is offline UpCDownCLeftCRightC 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 03:54 PM

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View PostXRick, on 23 December 2018 - 12:38 PM, said:

Yes, SA2 & 06 were quite the departure from the Classics, in all senses. That was one of the things that started dividing the community.
But the Classics were very self-contained in their plot and setting, usually islands far removed from any signs of civilization.
SA1 bringing up humans and civilization was, to me, said revolution and expansion. And even the plot was related to S3K, from what the japanese synopsis mentioned. In that sense, SA1 ended up becoming the end of the first arc of the overall series.
SA2 began the second arc, Shadow's, which ended in Shadow the Hedgehog. To me, Heroes' attempt to being the series back to the Classics' feel felt shallow and sloppy, and ShTH didn't help a bit, ending said arc in a bad note.
Then ST had the amazing idea of trying to reboot the series with 06, but only in gameplay. They tried to make a next gen SA1&2 in one package, but it all fell through and caused the series to follow the current iteration, which I can hardly like a bit. It isn't the SA1/2 I enjoyed nor the Classics that filled my childhood, it's as shallow as Heroes and ShTH. Gameplay-wise, it's only better than those and 06 because it became Sola Sonica and Boost-to-Win.

Laughingcow pretty much said it but yes, that is the important distinction I make between SA1 and SA2. Many people have felt for a long time that SA1 was something of a (rough) swan song for the classic era. It not only kept in line with its predecessors but attempted to expand the lore more to emphasize a bit more world building. Absolutely nothing wrong with that at all and as a kid I instantly loved what they were after. Of course SA1 came up short in many of the key gameplay areas but I knew what Sonic Team wanted to do, and all around it is the same dream I still share to this very day.

SA2 on the other hand was for all intents and purposes the beginning of modern sonic. I have never viewed SA2 as a disaster quality game or anything of that sort, but it was the progenitor of just about every bad trend introduced in the modern era. Even while SA1 introduced the alternative gameplay styles, SA2 did it in a way that, instead of having them be mini game like distractions from the main course of Sonic's gameplay (by the way which had the greatest number of levels and length) scaled them up into their own thing which then almost doubled Sonic's gameplay in proportionality and focus! And they were unbelievably dull, particularly Tails stages which are some of the most boring I've ever played in a sonic game.

I could go on about this but the point is that what SA2 started, 06 finished in a far more spectacular, disastrous climax. Some of the modern sensibilities still exist of course, but the greatest damage to the series had already been done even while SEGA tried hard to run away from the legacy created by that game.
This post has been edited by UpCDownCLeftCRightC: 23 December 2018 - 04:01 PM

#40 User is offline E-122-Psi 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 04:00 PM

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View PostUpCDownCLeftCRightC, on 23 December 2018 - 03:54 PM, said:

Laughingcow pretty much said it but yes, that is the important distinction I make between SA1 and SA2. Many people have felt for a long time that SA1 was something of an rough swan song for the classic era. It not only kept in line with its predecessors but attempted to expand the lore more to emphasize a bit more world building. Absolutely nothing wrong with that at all and as a kid I instantly loved what they were after. Of course SA1 came up short in many of the key gameplay areas but I knew what they wanted to do, and all around it is the same dream I still share to this very day.

SA2 on the other hand was for all intents and purposes the beginning of modern sonic. I have never viewed SA2 as a disaster quality game or anything of that sort, but it was the progenitor of just about every bad trend introduced in the modern era. Even while SA1 introduced the alternative gameplay styles, SA2 did it in a way that, instead of having them be mini game like distractions from the main course of Sonic's gameplay (by the way which had the greatest number of levels and length) scaled them up into their own thing which then almost doubled Sonic's gameplay in proportionality and focus! And they were unbelievably dull, particularly Tails stages which are some of the most boring I've ever played in a sonic game.

I could go on about this but the point is that what SA2 started, 06 finished in a far more spectacular, disastrous climax. Some of the modern sensibilities still exist of course, but the greatest damage to the series had already been done even while SEGA tried hard to run away from the legacy created by that game.


Yeah I noticed a similar feel with SA1, though I feel like that might have been so even if all of the characters had gotten equal focus as Sonic in that game. It's not just Sonic's game being the larger portion of the game, it feels like a lot of the standard physics and mechanics seeped a lot more into the others in that game. Tails and Knuckles still play very akin to Sonic for example, just with a couple different abilities and different objectives. Gamma also keeps a much faster more momentum based gameplay style than the mechs in SA2. Even Big and Amy who were larger deviations, still had a touch of that same feel to them.

It also still kept a bit of the same candy store structure as the old games. I still loved how in SA1 you could choose through going through these separate gameplay styles and characters rather than them being forced onto you like in SA2 and ESPECIALLY Next Gen. Sure some like Big weren't spectacular, but so long as it was an extra option, having it was kinda cool to try out.

I believe Josh already touched on this in greater depth in his analysis, but it felt like SA2 discarded on those lingering elements of classic physics that SA1 had at least tried to do but not quite accomplished. It's really a shame no other game really took the parts SA1 really came close and refined them (though I could argue Lost World TRIED to play on it in a different way).
This post has been edited by E-122-Psi: 23 December 2018 - 04:03 PM

#41 User is offline XRick 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 04:02 PM

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By that logic of yours, @UpC, I guess having ST or whoever may develop the next Sonic Game take the Classics and SA1 into account could be the best way for a new Sonic Game getting a gameplay, cast, setting and plot that felt like it's most successful predecessors. Am I wrong in thinking like this?
This post has been edited by XRick: 23 December 2018 - 04:04 PM

#42 User is offline UpCDownCLeftCRightC 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 04:23 PM

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View PostLaughingcow, on 23 December 2018 - 12:17 PM, said:

View PostXRick, on 23 December 2018 - 11:44 AM, said:

To me, SA1 was a revolutionary and interesting way to expand Sonic's World, despite the severe lack of anthros in comparison to humans. It felt close to the feel of the Classics, but still taking a step forward.

And that is something pretty much everyone believes if this old thread is any evidence.
https://forums.sonic...showtopic=36727

To not beat around the bush, even if Sonic 06 wasn't a steaming pile with "good writing", it is still a vast departure from the Classics which is the same point of contention that SA2 has. My solution: Make a separate sub-series starring Shadow and place all the realistic junk there. This issue is that the realism isn't Sonic because it goes against the Classics ergo give all that to a character who by all means was made for that kind of environment.

This is such a common sense idea I'm shocked it hasn't already happened. I've advocated for it a number of times myself. If there are fans of that kind of thing then obviously it has a place in the market but you still have to protect your brand. So segment it off so those fans can get what they want and build your main sonic to actually be sonic and stick to his guns (well I guess not in the 2005 literal sense....).

I think the best way to handle the franchise is to have a big main series sonic title every 3-4 years, one on a scale similar to SA1 that is purely "sonic-y", the flagship for the franchise in the same way that odyssey or galaxy were for Mario.
Then every 2 years or so give a smaller sub series entry which caters to that SA2-Shadow "anime" era fans while also allowing you to try interesting new development ideas (perhaps of successful, can be brought into the main games).
Then a TSR style spinoff whenever you feel the demand for it. I would even consider developing a Sonic R style spinoff using the boost game as its base platform, since it seems so naturally suited to that sort of thing. Everybody wins.

Just no more 06's. No more insane development cycles. Flesh out the content as it needs to be fleshed out, so you don't embarrass yourself globally again.
This post has been edited by UpCDownCLeftCRightC: 23 December 2018 - 04:27 PM

#43 User is offline XRick 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 04:28 PM

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Maybe now someone could try to state those ideas to Aaron Webber, now that Iizuka and such are coming to America. Who knows, it might come to happen.

#44 User is offline UpCDownCLeftCRightC 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 04:49 PM

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View PostXRick, on 23 December 2018 - 04:02 PM, said:

By that logic of yours, @UpC, I guess having ST or whoever may develop the next Sonic Game take the Classics and SA1 into account could be the best way for a new Sonic Game getting a gameplay, cast, setting and plot that felt like it's most successful predecessors. Am I wrong in thinking like this?

I'm a tad bit confused by your wording but I think you're asking me if I feel like a SA1 spiritial succesor could be the right direction for the franchise? Sure it could be. I'd be lying if i said i wouldnt be excited by that. I don't think it's the only way of going about things necessarily. But I do think Sonic should focus on being Sonic, from here onwards. I think a huge part of that is remembering the classics because of how successful and consistent they naturally were/are for sonic. I mean just LOOK at what Mania did all in the span of a year; its obvious what works for sonic.
But that doesnt mean every game has to be exactly like they were. Sonic team just needs to remember the sensibilities of that foundation and the gameplay feel. I also think it would be a huge help for a little more consistency in the plot and world building. don't jump the shark as laughingcow said. Keep it consistent with what you imagine would logically feel natural in sonic's world. And define what sonic's world more or less is in the first place. The reason why I loved SA1 is because it attempted all of these things in a somewhat natural solution. It just didn't execute that well....mainly because it was the series first real try with 3D....and it was 1996. A team with today's tech and know how should have no problem achieving a concept akin to that.

#45 User is offline Laughingcow 

Posted 23 December 2018 - 05:03 PM

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Methinks the subject of a Shadow the Hedgehog sub-series would make better conversation as its own thread instead of derailing this one further. It'd also give an excuse to talk about the guilty pleasure that is Black Sonic with a gun.

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